During the BMW USA Test Fest, we seized the opportunity to evaluate the performance of the 2024 BMW i5 eDrive40 in comparison to the all-new BMW 530i. Although both vehicles feature rear-wheel drive, they are distinguished by entirely different drivetrains. The i5 eDrive40 offers electric power with 335 horsepower and a choice of rear-wheel or all-wheel drive, while the 530i features a 2.0 liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine with a mild hybrid system and also with a choice of rear-wheel or all-wheel drive as well. The 530i delivers 255 horsepower and both have the same amount of torque: 295 lb-ft.

The i5 boasts quicker acceleration, from 0-60 mph in 5.7 seconds while the 530i achieves 0-60 mph in 5.9 seconds. But there is a major weight disadvantage for the i5 eDrive40 which weighs nearly 5,000 lbs compared to the 4,000 lbs in the 530i. So will the additional power make up for the extra weight? That’s one of the things we wanted to find out in this head-to-head comparison. The price difference is also significant. The 2024 BMW i5 eDrive40 starts at $67,795 while the 530i RWD begins at $58,895.

Apart from the distinctions in drivetrain, these two business sedans share identical characteristics. Both are constructed on the CLAR flexible architecture, adhering to the same design language. From a distance, discerning between the gasoline and electric variants can be a challenge, as they exhibit subtle differences. One such nuance is the presence of the “i” logo on the electrified 5 Series’ kidney grille. Internally, both models feature identical designs, material options, trim choices, and technological features.

Naturally, their driving experiences are extremely different. The i5 eDrive40, with its instant torque, offers a more engaging and, dare I say, fun drive. In contrast, the B48 takes a bit more time to deliver the power required in scenarios such as overtaking or navigating corners. Of course, our video review will cover that aspect and more, so let’s take a look!